Family Visitation Centers

A variety of family situations necessitate the use of the visitation centers including intimate partner violence, a history of difficulties surrounding child visitation or exchange, parental substance use or lack of suitable visitation space, among others. Services include on-site multi family group supervised visits, monitored exchange or individually supervised visits. The three centers, in Wilmington, Newark and Middletown are equipped with trained staff, video cameras, and other safety features. Prior to starting visitation or exchange, each adult party must participate in an individual orientation. Children may take part in child orientations or a series of orientations to help them learn about the center and increase their comfort. The centers make every effort to provide services at a reasonable cost.

Hudson Center:
Phone: 302-283-7518
Fax: 302-283-7596
Hours of Operation:
Sun 9am – 7pm
Wed & Thurs 4pm – 9pm

Belvedere Center:
Phone: 302-892-5980
Hours of Operation:
Fri 4pm – 9pm
Sat 9pm – 6pm

Safe Haven Visitation Center
210 Cleaver Farm Road
Suite 200
Middletown, DE 19709
Phone: 302-449-1722
Fax: 302-449-1724

Hours of Operation:
Wed & Fri: 5pm – 9pm
Sat & Sun: 9am – 5pm

Voicemail messages can be left at all numbers.

The Domestic Violence Treatment Program provides structured counseling interventions for both men and women who have perpetrated acts of intimate partner abuse. The counseling interventions are certified by the Domestic Violence Coordinating Council and adhere to standards established by that organization. The counseling interventions are provided in both English and Spanish. A significant number of the participants have also been victims of abuse and violence within an intimate partner relationship. While participation within the services can be either voluntary or court mandated, the majority of participants have been referred as either criminal offenders or respondents of civil Protection From Abuse (PFA) proceedings.

The interventions help participants develop a more accurate and comprehensive understanding of violence and abuse, accept responsibility for their behavior, commit unconditionally to change abusive behavior and learn how to safely respond to abusive actions of others. The services employ a combination of support, encouragement and respectful confrontation in efforts to facilitate change.

For Orientation dates for Men, call Robin at (302) 762-8989.

For Orientation dates for Women, call Ann Altemus at (302) 762-8989.

For victims seeking shelter call the Domestic Violence Hotline at (302) 762-6110.

Martha’s Carriage House & Sarah’s House

Martha’s Carriage House, a 25-bed emergency shelter, which provides a safe refuge for women and their children experiencing domestic violence. Often, the precipitating reason for seeking shelter is the realization that the violence is not just hurting the mother, but that the abuse is having a devastating effect on her children as well.

Counselor/Advocates help every step of the way, often providing assistance with the complexities of the legal system. The goal is to empower the participant so that she survives and heals from the abuse. Counseling for both women and children is essential because it may be the only opportunity for them to gain some understanding about domestic violence, be heard, and to cope with the trauma of the abuse. Trained, degreed staff are on-site 24/7 to counsel women and children. Women are offered support groups, legal and social services advocacy, and are educated on the cycle of domestic violence and basic parenting skills. Children are offered activities, help with adjusting to shelter and assessment by a Licensed Social Worker.

Similar to Martha’s Carriage House, Sarah’s House is an 18-bed emergency shelter for women and children experiencing domestic violence. Sarah’s House serves clients from all over the State. The program’s services are centered around independence, where clients are provided with resources for employment and housing, legal advocacy, safety planning, counseling, and other needs they may have. Counseling is part of the program available to participants residing at Martha’s Carriage House and Sarah’s House.

Seeking Protection From Abuse
CHILD, Inc.’s Domestic Violence Advocacy Program helps to empower victims of intimate partner violence by guiding them through the Family Court system as they seek protection from their abusive partners. Advocacy services are available within Family Court in all three counties.

Trained advocates provide assistance to victims of domestic violence before, during and after the Protection From Abuse process. Although the advocates are not attorneys, they may be able to link victims with free or low cost attorneys. They provide referrals and resources, support during the hearing, crisis counseling and they help victims develop a plan to move forward with their lives. Advocates are available during court hours only.

New Castle County call (302) 255-0420

Kent County call (302) 672-1075

Sussex County call (302) 856-5843

Therapy Services
Northern New Castle County
Ongoing treatment is offered to individuals who are in abusive intimate relationships. Individual therapy is available to both male and female victims. The focus of therapy is to help persons establish safety and stability in their lives as well as the lives of their children. For these services call Ann Altemus at (302) 762-8989.

Southern & Western New Castle County
In an effort to provide services to the growing needs of an expanding population in the area of Southern & Western New Castle County, CHILD, Inc., established a program offering domestic violence therapy for victims at scattered sites throughout Southern & Western New Castle County. A full time community therapist provides these services. Counseling is also available for children impacted by domestic violence at some of these same sites. For these services call Monet Floyd at (302) 229-5872.

Support Group
A safe group for individuals who have experienced (or are experiencing) abuse / violence from an intimate partner relationship. Groups meet on a weekly basis. Childcare is not available at either group.

Northern New Castle County

Open (Walk-in) Group
Tuesday Evenings, 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
CHILD, Inc., 507 Philadelphia Pike, Wilmington, DE 19809
Contact: Ann Altemus, LCSW at (302) 254-5507.

Southern New Castle County

Open (Walk-in) Group
Monday Evenings, 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
15 N. Baltimore Pike, Christiana, DE 19702
Contact: Mone’t Floyd (302) 229-5872.

Other Resources

Delaware Victim Services Website

FREE Parenting Classes are offered at convenient locations throughout the state. These interactive classes present information in a comfortable, supportive environment and are designed to make parents/caregivers more successful, effective and confident.

Three curriculums are offered, each focusing on a different state of development.

Birth to Three
(for families with infants and toddlers, birth to 3 years of age)
This class emphasizes the importance of the first three years of life and demonstrates how parents and caregivers can promote healthy development in infants and toddlers. Topics include creating a healthy, stimulating environment, nutrition, developmental milestones, child safety and well-being, the importance of well-baby checkups, choosing quality childcare, developing language and setting age appropriate limits. Class meet once a week for 6 weeks.

Children Come Without Instructions
(for families raising children ages 4 through 12)
The class is designed to increase knowledge of child development, teach effective communication skills and positive strategies for setting limits and guiding behavior. Other topics of discussion include child safety & well-being and managing stress. Instructors also provide information and referrals to a variety of other community support services. Class meets once a week for 6 weeks.

Teens Come Without Instructions
(for families raising adolescents ages 12 and older)
The class provides a supportive environment where parents/caregivers can discuss issues related to adolescent development. Topics addressed include physical/emotional changes, adolescent brain development, effective communication, managing stress and anger, setting limits and conflict management. Class meets once a week for 8 weeks.

The class Certificate of Completion satisfies the parenting class requirement for the following agencies:

Department of Services for Children, Youth and Families Department of Corrections/ Probation & Parole

CHILD, Inc. also provides workshops, trainings and speakers for schools, churches, community centers, and private organizations.
Bi-lingual instructors are available in all 3 counties.
If you would like class schedules or other program material emailed to you, contact denger@childinc.com to be added to our listserve.

Children’s First provides counseling services to families involved in divorce, separation, custody and visitation issues.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Michele Ostafy at (302) 762-8989.

Separation/Divorce Seminar

This 6-hour certified separation/divorce seminar entitled “Children Cope with Separation Seminar fulfills the Delaware State Law requiring parenting education for parents/caregivers petitioning Family Court for Separation, Divorce, Custody, and/or Visitation issues. This seminar provides important information for families in transition, focusing on the best interest of the children.

No childcare is provided and no children are permitted at the class.

A small number of Delaware’s victim service providers adopted the Allstate Foundation’s financial literacy and economic security curriculum which is specfic to the needs of domestic violence victims / survivors. The curriculum, broken into five units, is meant to be explored sequentially in a group format. It offers guidance in keeping safe from financial abuse, understanding financial fundamentals such as the importance saving money and maintaining a good credit score through home buying and investing. The curriculum has been presented to more than 150 self identified victims at CHILD, Inc. in the last five years. Victims also benefit from individual financial counseling, help with challenging inaccurate credit reports and referrals to more intensive intervention. Each participant creates individualized goals and steps to achieve such goals. The class series and follow up sessions are available to any person, whether a current client of CHILD, Inc. or not, who identifies as a victim/survivor of domestic violence. Interested parties should contact Kari at 302-762-8989.

Lastly, the program offers matched savings to encourage participants to open a savings account or continue to make contributions to their existing account. This program provides incentives such as dinner, gift cards, bus cards and babysitting services to support participation in the workshops.

302-762-6110

Domestic Violence Hotline

The Domestic Violence Hotline is a 24/7 Bilingual (Spanish and English) service for people who are experiencing domestic violence. Callers talk with a degreed, trained advocate about their unique situation. The hotline counselors are trained to respond to crisis situations, safety plan and to refer to a variety of community services. Many callers find relief simply by connecting with the hotline counselor. The hotline call sometimes leads to entering one of the domestic violence shelters.